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20 February 2019updated 07 Sep 2021 10:20am

Surgical stitch-up: meet the placebo surgeon

Could the placebo effect work in surgery? When a doctor wanted to investigate – by opening patients up but not operating – some said it was criminal. But the resulting study has shaken the medical world

By Xan Rice

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This article appears in the 14 Aug 2019 issue of the New Statesman, The age of conspiracy